Seafood carbonara is a pasta based dish made by combining seafood, pasta and a creamy white sauce called carbonara. The carbonara sauce which is an Italian invention dating back to the mid 20th century, is prepared by mixing beaten eggs with cheese, salt and freshly ground pepper. The original pasta alla carbonara, from which this the seafood carbonara is inspired, follows the same basic ingredients as the original, often with an addition of a few more new ingredients. However, it replaces the bacon or the pancetta traditionally mentioned in the original recipe, with seafood.
The seafood used may range from any sea fish like tuna to any shelled seafood like crabs, shrimps, mussels, scallops, scampi, prawns and clams. Sea urchins or mollusks like calamari or squid are also popularly incorporated. Moreover, while some seafood carbonaras may only contain a specific kind of seafood, the others may combine two or more assorted seafood. Rarely though, a seafood carbonara recipe can also call for the addition of bacon even if seafood is used.
Popular Methods of Preparing Seafood Carbonara
Tiger Shrimp Carbonara
Ingredients: Tiger shrimps, pasta, garlic, eggs, white wine, chicken or seafood stock, salt, freshly ground pepper, olive oil, grated parmesan, grated Romano cheese and chopped basil.
Preparation Method: The garlic is sautéed in the oil and mixed with wine and stock. The simmering liquid is seasoned with salt and pepper. The pasta is cooked until al dente and then drained. The eggs are beaten and combined with grated cheese and seasoning. The shrimps are fried separately until golden and combined with the simmering wine sauce. The pasta is then mixed with the egg carbonara sauce and the wine sauce. The dish is served with fresh basil garnish.
Mixed Seafood Penne Carbonara
Ingredients: Thickened cream, fresh milk, mixed seafood( mussels, fish, prawns, calamari and salmon), button mushrooms, shaved parmesan cheese, chopped parsley, cooked and drained penne, salt, freshly ground pepper, egg yolk, butter, chopped garlic and spring onions.
Preparation Method: The garlic, mushrooms, seafood and penne are stir-fried in butter and seasoned with salt and pepper. The carbonara is prepared by combining egg yolk, spring onions, milk and cream. The sauce is poured over the pasta while it is still very hot. The dish is served with shaved cheese and parsley garnish.
Spicy Seafood Carbonara
Ingredients: Spaghetti, chopped red onion, eggs, chopped garlic, mixed seafood (fish fillets, mussels, squid and prawn), bay leaves, mixed herbs of choice, Parmesan cheese, cream flour, fish or chicken stock, butter, chopped parsley, freshly ground black pepper and salt.
Preparation Method: The pasta is cooked as per package instructions while the onion and garlic are sautéed in the butter. The bay leaves, stock, flour, and mixed herbs are then added and cooked for sometime followed by the seafood. The eggs are beaten and combined with the cheese, cream and seasoning to make carbonara. The pasta is tossed with the herbs mixture and then with the egg mixture. This seafood carbonara is then served with grated Parmesan cheese garnish.